Celebrate Banned Book Week 2017 with Comics

Since 1982, every September the American Library Association (ALA) spotlights the challenges to the public's access to information with the Banned Books Week celebration. Taking place September 24-30 this year, Banned Books Week is a time when librarians, publishers, booksellers, and readers of all types come together to celebrate the freedom to read through events, displays, and more.

"Graphic novels are frequently challenged in libraries for a variety of reasons," said Barbara Jones, director of the ALA's Office of Intellectual Freedom. "Some people don't think they're real literature, so there's that problem. Some people think they're too sexy – violence doesn't seem to bother people, but sex does."

One of the best resources for gathering the top banned books nationally is ALA's Top 10 Most Challenged Books list featured annually in their The State of America's Libraries magazine. This year, several graphic novels made it on to the list including This One Summer by Mariko Tamik and Jillian Tamaki and Big Hard Sex Criminals by Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarkshy (to view all titles featured on ALA's Most Challenged Books list for 2016, click here).

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF) also offers a number of resources for libraries and booksellers, including the Banned Books Week Handbook, which features information on book ban attempts and tactics for fighting book banning. Past handbooks can be found on the CBLDF web site.

For more information or to participate, visit www.BannedBooksWeek.org. For a list of graphic novels to include in your Banned Books Week event, see below:

Batman: The Killing Joke
978-1401216672, $17.99

According to the grinning engine of madness and mayhem known as The Joker, that's all that separates the sane from the psychotic. Now Batman must race to stop his archnemesis before his reign of terror claims two of the Dark Knight's closest friends. Can he finally put an end to the cycle of bloodlust and lunacy that links these two iconic foes?


Big Hard Sex Criminals
978-1632152435, $39.99

Suzie's just a regular gal with an irregular gift: when she has sex, she stops time. One day she meets Jon and it turns out he has the same ability. And sooner or later they get around to using their gifts to do what we'd ALL do: rob a couple banks. A bawdy and brazen sex comedy for comics begins here.


Blankets
978-1770462182, $29.95

Blankets is the story of a young man coming of age and finding the confidence to express his creative voice. Craig Thompson's poignant graphic memoir plays out against the backdrop of a Midwestern winterscape: finely-hewn linework draws together a portrait of small town life, a rigorously fundamentalist Christian childhood, and a lonely, emotionally mixed-up adolescence.


Bone 
978-1888963144, $39.99

Meet the Bone cousins, Fone Bone, Phoney Bone and Smiley Bone, three misfits who are run out of Boneville and find themselves lost in a vast uncharted desert. They make their way into a deep, forested valley filled with wonderful and terrifying creatures. With the help of the mysterious Thorn, her tough-as-nails Gran’ma Ben and the Great Red Dragon, the boys do their best to survive in the middle of brewing trouble between the valley’s denizens. It will be the longest – but funniest – year of their lives! 


Drama
978-0545326995, $10.99

Callie loves theater. And while she would totally try out for her middle school's production of Moon over Mississippi, she can't really sing. Instead she's the set designer for the drama department's stage crew, and this year she's determined to create a set worthy of Broadway on a middle-school budget. But how can she, when she doesn't know much about carpentry, ticket sales are down, and the crew members are having trouble working together? 


Fun Home
978-0618871711, $15.99

Meet Alison's father, a historic preservation expert and obsessive restorer of the family's Victorian home, a third-generation funeral home director, a high school English teacher, an icily distant parent, and a closeted homosexual who, as it turns out, is involved with his male students and a family babysitter. Through narrative that is alternately heartbreaking and fiercely funny, we are drawn into a daughter's complex yearning for her father.And yet, apart from assigned stints dusting caskets at the family-owned "fun home," as Alison and her brothers call it, the relationship achieves its most intimate expression through the shared code of books. When Alison comes out as homosexual herself in late adolescense, the denouement is swift, graphic -- and redemptive.


Palomar
978-1560975397, $210.00

The stories weave in and out of the town's entire population, crafting an intricate tapestry of Latin American experience. Hernandez's densely plotted and deeply imagined tales are often compared with magic realist authors like Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Isabel Allende (House of the Spirits). His depictions of women and Mexican-American experience have been universally lauded as the best examples the artform has to offer.


Tank Girl
978-1785855269, $16.99

With a few bars of gold left, and Sub Girl’s uneasy feeling that she left something behind, Tank Girl hires her scientist friend to reinvent time travel. The Third Reich have no idea what is coming their way! (The third and final chapter in new Tank Girl trilogy and anticipated follow-up to Tank Girl: Gold)


Saga Volume 7
978-1534300606, $14.99

From the worldwide bestselling team of FIONA STAPLES and BRIAN K. VAUGHAN, “The War for Phang” is an epic, self-contained SAGA event! Finally reunited with her ever-expanding family, Hazel travels to a war-torn comet that Wreath and Landfall have been battling over for ages. New friendships are forged and others are lost forever in this action-packed volume about families, combat and the refugee experience.


This One Summer
978-1596437746, $17.99

Every summer, Rose goes with her mom and dad to a lake house in Awago Beach. It's their getaway, their refuge. Rosie's friend Windy is always there, too, like the little sister she never had. But this summer is different. Rose's mom and dad won't stop fighting, and when Rose and Windy seek a distraction from the drama, they find themselves with a whole new set of problems. One of the local teens - just a couple of years older than Rose and Windy - is caught up in something bad... Something life threatening.


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Monstress Volume 2: The Blood Monstress Volume 2: The Blood
Image Comics
Set in an alternate matriarchal 1900's Asia, in a richly imagined world of art deco-inflected steam punk, MONSTRESS tells the story of a teenage girl who is struggling to survive the trauma of war, and who shares a mysterious psychic link with a monster of tremendous power. >>
Saga Volume 7 Saga Volume 7
Image Comics
From the worldwide bestselling team of FIONA STAPLES and BRIAN K. VAUGHAN, “The War for Phang” is an epic, self-contained SAGA event! Finally reunited with her ever-expanding family, Hazel travels to a war-torn comet that Wreath and Landfall have been battling over for ages. >>
Bloodborne Official Artworks Bloodborne Official Artworks
Udon Entertainment
In the terrifying video game Bloodborne, deranged mobs and nightmarish creatures lurk around every corner of a horror-filled gothic city. Bloodborne: Official Artworks collects the hair-raising artwork behind this modern action role-playing classic.  >>
Walking Dead Volume 27: The Whisperer War Walking Dead Volume 27: The Whisperer War
Image Comics
The time has come. The forces are aligning. The war has begun! Has Rick brought about the demise of everything he's built? Or will he triumph once again? Know this... there will be a cost. Collects THE WALKING DEAD #157-162. >>
Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide Volume 47 Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide Volume 47
Gemstone Publishing
One of the most influential comic book artists ever, Jim Steranko, brings his compelling mastery of the art form to the cover of the book that has been the Bible of serious collectors, dealers and enthusiasts since 1970!  >>
Rick and Morty Volume 1 Rick and Morty Volume 1
Oni Press
Based on the hilarious animated show RICK & MORTY by Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland, depraved genius Rick Sanchez embarks on insane adventures with his awkward grandson Morty across the universe and across time. >>
Providence Act 1 Providence Act 1
Avatar Press
Alan Moore’s quintessential horror series has set the standard for a terrifying examination of the works of H.P. Lovecraft. Providence Act 1 Hard Cover edition that contains Providence issues #1-4. >>
Snotgirl Volume 1: Green Hair Don't Care Snotgirl Volume 1: Green Hair Don't Care
Image Comics
WHO IS LOTTIE PERSON? Is she a gorgeous, fun-loving social media star with a perfect life or a gross, allergy-ridden mess? Enter a world of snot, blood, and tears in this first collection from New York Times Best Seller BRYAN LEE O’MALLEY (Scott Pilgrim, Seconds) and dazzling newcomer LESLIE HUNG! >>
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook
Paizo
This complete standalone fantasy roleplaying game takes your fantasy campaigns to new heights of adventure! Backward-compatible with the 3.5 fantasy rules but offering new solutions and options that place it firmly on the cutting edge. >>